Bitcoin and the Lightning Network are moving payments globally

Welcome back to Chain Reaction, a podcast that delves into the stories, background, and breaking news with the biggest names in crypto.

For this week’s episode, jaquelyn interviewed Jack Mallers, the founder and CEO of Strike, a bitcoin-based financial application and payment network that is trying to expand the reach of cross-border payment and remittance markets.

Last year, Mallers’ company raised $80 million in a Series B round to grow in that space, and today counts major companies like Visa, Clover and Fiserv among its partners.

“I think it’s about meeting consumers where they are and solving a problem for them,” Mallers said.

Mallers is also the CEO of Zap, a bitcoin investment and payments company that transacts on the Lightning Network, which is a second layer on the Bitcoin blockchain that allows for off-chain transactions between parties.

“We are a company involved with Bitcoin, but we don’t care about its price,” Mallers said. “We use Bitcoin and the Lightning Network for payments, so we’re actually using Bitcoin, the instrument, to move value around the world. But our clients spend and receive dollars, or spend and receive euros, or spend and receive stablecoins.”

The service works whether Bitcoin costs $1 or $1 million, Mallers said. The business does not depend on price, but is “using it as a technological innovation in the world of payments.”

We discuss Mallers’ backstory, how he entered the Bitcoin scene as a young adult, whether the Lightning Network could be better than the payment networks out there today, and how big players can enter the space. This episode heavily focused on Bitcoin, so buckle up.

We also dive into:

  • The Global Power of the Lightning Network
  • Bitcoin adoption in El Salvador
  • Creating new infrastructure to make Bitcoin more accessible
  • The future of the Strike and Bitcoin ecosystems

“I think Lightning will serve as the only value transfer protocol for land,” Mallers said. “But, I think, as we evolve in the early stages of this journey, the lower fruit is: how do you get tax value across planet earth? That’s why we started there and focused there.”

Chain Reaction comes out every other Thursday at 12:00 p.m.

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James D. Brown
James D. Brown
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